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Topical Collection "Environment and Applied Ecology"

Editor

Dr. Elena Rada
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Theoretical and Applied Science Department - DiSTA, Insubria University, Via G.B. Vico, 46 – Varese I – 21100, Italy
Interests: environmental pollution; circular economy; waste and wastewater management; human health; renewable energy; interdisciplinary approaches for environmental management
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

This collection focuses on original research and reviews regarding environment and ecology, specifically applied ecology and its potentialities in supporting the management of the environment. The collection is also interested in conceptual articles and commentaries. Research and studies on databases, modeling approaches, and technologies applied to ecology and environment are the starting point of the future, in order to comply with the new concept of the circular economy. Legislative frameworks connected with the environmental footprint of urban ecology must be valorized, thanks to more and more innovative available tools.

In this framework, studies concerning the following topics are welcome, as well as other related topics, in the form of both interdisciplinary and specialized manuscripts:

    Community, ecosystem, and global ecology;

    Biometrics, theoretical and quantitative ecology;

    Applied microbiology, biotechnology, and public health microbiology;

    Aquatic resources, biomonitoring;

    Water scarcity, water quality, and water management;

    Multidisciplinary agricultural and environmental research;

    Sustainable and organic agriculture, natural resource management;

    Clean energy and sustainability;

    Environmental protection, environmental management, and sustainability;

    Environmental analysis and measurements;

    Health and environment;

    Ecological methodology, monitoring, and modeling;

    Biodiversity and ecosystem research;

    Ecological economics, natural capital, and ecosystem services;

    Climatology, meteorology, climate ecology, climate change, and environment.

Dr. Elena Cristina Rada
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the collection website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (8 papers)

2021

Jump to: 2020

Article
Exploring Spatial Variations in the Relationships between Landscape Functions and Human Activities in Suburban Rural Communities: A Case Study in Jiangning District, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(18), 9782; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18189782 - 17 Sep 2021
Viewed by 712
Abstract
There is a complicated and contradictory relationship between landscape functions and human activities, especially in the suburban rural communities of metropolises. Previous studies focused on human interference to landscape function, ignoring the impact of landscape functions on human activities. Hence, the present study [...] Read more.
There is a complicated and contradictory relationship between landscape functions and human activities, especially in the suburban rural communities of metropolises. Previous studies focused on human interference to landscape function, ignoring the impact of landscape functions on human activities. Hence, the present study is focused on the impact of landscape function (based on ecosystem services) on human activities in suburban rural communities of China. The study evaluated the intensity of human activities based on big data; furthermore, the authors analyzed the spatial distribution characteristics through spatial autocorrelation, and probed into the spatial variations in the relationship between human activities and landscape functions using ordinary least squares (OLS) and geographically weighted regression (GWR) models. The result indicates that there are obvious spatial distribution differences in the intensity of human activities in suburban rural communities; that is, the intensity decreases from the inner to the outer suburban areas. Positive influencing factors of human activities are construction area, bus station, road network density, and leisure entertainment, among which, construction area is the principal driver; cultural heritage, hydrological regulation, and provision of aesthetics are negatively or positively correlated with human activities in various regions. The results offer insights for the sustainable development of rural environment in suburban areas and the big data-driven rural research. Full article
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Article
Effect of Treating Acid Sulfate Soils with Phosphate Solubilizing Bacteria on Germination and Growth of Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum L.)
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(17), 8919; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18178919 - 25 Aug 2021
Viewed by 421
Abstract
Acid sulfate soils contain sulfide minerals that have adverse environmental effects because they can lead to acidic drainage and prevent the establishment of vegetation. The current study examined the effect of a novel method for the restoration of these soils and the promotion [...] Read more.
Acid sulfate soils contain sulfide minerals that have adverse environmental effects because they can lead to acidic drainage and prevent the establishment of vegetation. The current study examined the effect of a novel method for the restoration of these soils and the promotion of germination and plant growth. Thus, we isolated two strains of phosphate solubilizing bacteria, Methylobacterium sp. PS and Caballeronia sp. EK, characterized their properties, and examined their effects in promoting the growth of tomato plants (Lycopersicon esculentum L.) in acid sulfate soil. Compared with untreated control soil, treatment of acid sulfate soils with these bacterial strains led to increased seed germination, growth of plants with more leaves, and plants with greater levels of total-adenosine tri-phosphate (tATP). Relative to the untreated control soil, the addition of Caballeronia sp. EK led to a 60% increase in seed germination after 52 days, growth of plants with more than 3 times as many leaves, and a 45.2% increase in tATP after 50 days. This strain has potential for use as a plant biofertilizer that promotes vegetation growth in acid sulfate soils by improving the absorption of phosphorous. Full article
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Article
Mining Eco-Efficiency Measurement and Driving Factors Identification Based on Meta-US-SBM in Guangxi Province, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(10), 5397; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18105397 - 18 May 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 743
Abstract
The mining industry is one of the pillar industries of Guangxi’s economic and social development. The output value of mining and related industries accounts for 27% of the whole district’s total industrial output value. Therefore, the mining eco-efficiency measurement in Guangxi can be [...] Read more.
The mining industry is one of the pillar industries of Guangxi’s economic and social development. The output value of mining and related industries accounts for 27% of the whole district’s total industrial output value. Therefore, the mining eco-efficiency measurement in Guangxi can be of great significance for the sustainable development of Guangxi’s mining industry. This study adopted Meta-US-SBM to measure the mining eco-efficiency in Guangxi from 2008 to 2018, including economic efficiency, resource efficiency, and environmental efficiency. It used the standard deviation ellipse model to simulate the migration trend of four efficiencies in Guangxi and used GeoDetector and Tobit models to explore the internal and external factors that affect the mining eco-efficiency. The four efficiencies in Guangxi show large temporal and spatial heterogeneity, and the internal and external factors that affect the mining eco-efficiency are different. The following conclusions can be drawn. (1) Environmental efficiency and mining eco-efficiency are improving, while economic efficiency and resource efficiency are deteriorating. Cities bordering other provinces have a significantly better mining eco-efficiency than non-bordering cities. (2) The development center in Guangxi has migrated to the Beibu Gulf Economic Zone. (3) Natural resources index and mining economic scale have a great impact on the mining eco-efficiency, and with the increase of the mining economic scale, the mining eco-efficiency showed a typical “U-shaped” curve. Finally, this study put forward corresponding policy recommendations to improve the mining eco-efficiency in Guangxi from four aspects: opening-up, technological progress, regional coordination, and government control. Full article
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Article
Biosorption of Uranyl Ions from Aqueous Solution by Parachlorella sp. AA1
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(7), 3641; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18073641 - 31 Mar 2021
Viewed by 823
Abstract
In the present study we investigated the ability of the microalgal strain Parachlorella sp. AA1 to biologically uptake a radionuclide waste material. Batch experiments were conducted to investigate the biosorption of uranyl ions (U(VI)) in the 0.5–50.0 mg/L concentration range by strain AA1. [...] Read more.
In the present study we investigated the ability of the microalgal strain Parachlorella sp. AA1 to biologically uptake a radionuclide waste material. Batch experiments were conducted to investigate the biosorption of uranyl ions (U(VI)) in the 0.5–50.0 mg/L concentration range by strain AA1. The results showed that AA1 biomass could uptake U(VI). The highest removal efficiency and biosorption capacity (95.6%) occurred within 60 h at an initial U(VI) concentration of 20 mg/L. The optimum pH for biosorption was 9.0 at a temperature of 25 °C. X-ray absorption near edge structure analysis confirmed the presence of U(VI) in pellets of Parachlorella sp. AA1 cells. The biosorption methods investigated here may be useful in the treatment and disposal of nuclides and heavy metals in diverse wastewaters. Full article
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Article
Recent Evolution of the Intertidal Sand Ridge Lines of the Dongsha Shoal in the Modern Radial Sand Ridges, East China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(4), 1573; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18041573 - 07 Feb 2021
Viewed by 962
Abstract
The Dongsha Shoal is one of the largest shoals in the South Yellow Sea and has important marine ecological value. The shoal extends in a south–north direction and is controlled by the regional dominating tidal currents. Recently, due to human activities and some [...] Read more.
The Dongsha Shoal is one of the largest shoals in the South Yellow Sea and has important marine ecological value. The shoal extends in a south–north direction and is controlled by the regional dominating tidal currents. Recently, due to human activities and some natural factors, the geomorphic dynamics of the Dongsha Shoal has undergone drastic changes. However, few people have proposed quantitative research on the changes of tidal flat morphology, let alone the long-term sequence analysis of sand ridge lines. Hence, we attempt to take the Dongsha Shoal in the Radial Sand Ridges as the research area, and analyze the trends of the long-term morphological evolution of the sand ridge lines over the period 1973–2016 based on a high-density time series of medium-resolution satellite images. The sand ridge line generally moves from southeast to northwest, and the position distribution of the sand ridge line from north to south has gradually changed from compact to scattered. We also found that the geomorphological dynamics at different positions of the sand ridge line are inconsistent. The north and south wings are eroded on the west side, while the central area is eroded on the east side. Most of the sand ridge line is moving eastward. In addition, the change of sand ridge line is affected by multiple factors such as sediment supply, typhoon, reclamation and laver cultivation. Full article
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Article
Handling Complex Missing Data Using Random Forest Approach for an Air Quality Monitoring Dataset: A Case Study of Kuwait Environmental Data (2012 to 2018)
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(3), 1333; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18031333 - 02 Feb 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1140
Abstract
In environmental research, missing data are often a challenge for statistical modeling. This paper addressed some advanced techniques to deal with missing values in a data set measuring air quality using a multiple imputation (MI) approach. MCAR, MAR, and NMAR missing data techniques [...] Read more.
In environmental research, missing data are often a challenge for statistical modeling. This paper addressed some advanced techniques to deal with missing values in a data set measuring air quality using a multiple imputation (MI) approach. MCAR, MAR, and NMAR missing data techniques are applied to the data set. Five missing data levels are considered: 5%, 10%, 20%, 30%, and 40%. The imputation method used in this paper is an iterative imputation method, missForest, which is related to the random forest approach. Air quality data sets were gathered from five monitoring stations in Kuwait, aggregated to a daily basis. Logarithm transformation was carried out for all pollutant data, in order to normalize their distributions and to minimize skewness. We found high levels of missing values for NO2 (18.4%), CO (18.5%), PM10 (57.4%), SO2 (19.0%), and O3 (18.2%) data. Climatological data (i.e., air temperature, relative humidity, wind direction, and wind speed) were used as control variables for better estimation. The results show that the MAR technique had the lowest RMSE and MAE. We conclude that MI using the missForest approach has a high level of accuracy in estimating missing values. MissForest had the lowest imputation error (RMSE and MAE) among the other imputation methods and, thus, can be considered to be appropriate for analyzing air quality data. Full article
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Article
The Nutrition and Health Status of Residents of the Northern Regions of Russia: Outlook of Vertical Agricultural Farms
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(2), 414; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18020414 - 07 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1083
Abstract
This paper is dedicated to studying the nutrition, health status and food provision of the people living the northern regions of Russia. The authors developed a concept of comprehensive interdisciplinary research of traditional and innovative behavioral practices of actors in the northern regions [...] Read more.
This paper is dedicated to studying the nutrition, health status and food provision of the people living the northern regions of Russia. The authors developed a concept of comprehensive interdisciplinary research of traditional and innovative behavioral practices of actors in the northern regions of Russia in the field of food production and consumption in order to study the structure of nutrition of the population, its health status and the technologies that are used to provide the people with food products. The interdisciplinary comprehensive research applied the following methods: (a) statistical method; (b) sociological method of mass survey; (c) sociological method of expert interviews; (d) method of feasibility study; (e) method of mathematical modeling. According to the results of the analysis, the nutrition of the people living in the norther regions is characterized by insufficient consumption of fresh vegetables, meat and processed meat, fish and seafood, milk and dairy products, some vitamins and bio-elements (such as selenium, calcium) and excessive consumption of saturated fats and flour products. The following problems related to providing the population of the northern regions of Russia with food products were identified: the agriculture in almost all northern regions of Russia has negative profitability; imported food products and food ingredients are mostly used; there are drawbacks of logistics, transportation and storage of food products; the natural and climate conditions are unfavorable for traditional agriculture. The paper substantiates the economic, environmental, social, and political advantages of highly automated agro-industrial complex of vertical farming as an alternative method for providing food security of the inhabitants of the northern regions of Russia. Full article
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2020

Jump to: 2021

Article
The Sensitivity of a Specific Denitrification Rate under the Dissolved Oxygen Pressure
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(24), 9366; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17249366 - 14 Dec 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 609
Abstract
The biological denitrification process is extensively discussed in scientific literature. The process requires anoxic conditions, but the influence of residual dissolved oxygen (DO) on the efficiency is not yet adequately documented. The present research aims to fill this gap by highlighting [...] Read more.
The biological denitrification process is extensively discussed in scientific literature. The process requires anoxic conditions, but the influence of residual dissolved oxygen (DO) on the efficiency is not yet adequately documented. The present research aims to fill this gap by highlighting the effects of DO on the specific denitrification rate (SDNR) and consequently on the efficiency of the process. SDNR at a temperature of 20 °C (SDNR20°C) is the parameter normally used for the sizing of the denitrification reactor in biological-activated sludge processes. A sensitivity analysis of SNDR20°C to DO variations is developed. For this purpose, two of the main empirical models illustrated in the scientific literature are taken into consideration, with the addition of a deterministic third model proposed by the authors and validated by recent experimentations on several full-scale plants. In the first two models, SDNR20°C is expressed as a function of the only variable food:microrganism ratio in denitrification (F:MDEN), while in the third one, the dependence on DO is made explicit. The sensitivity analysis highlights all the significant dependence of SDNR20°C on DO characterized by a logarithmic decrease with a very pronounced gradient in correspondence with low DO concentrations. Moreover, the analysis demonstrates the relatively small influence of F:MDEN on the SDNR20°C and on the correlation between SDNR20°C and DO. The results confirm the great importance of minimizing DO and limiting, as much as possible, the transport of oxygen in the denitrification reactor through the incoming flows and mainly the mixed liquor recycle. Solutions to achieve this result in full-scale plants are reported. Full article
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